AN 9.16 Perceptions / Saññāsutta

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    • #17665
      Tobias G
      Participant

      In the sanna sutta (AN 9.16) it is said, there are 9 sanna:

      asubhasaññā, maraṇasaññā, āhāre paṭikūlasaññā, sabbaloke anabhiratasaññā, aniccasaññā, anicce dukkhasaññā, dukkhe anattasaññā, pahānasaññā, virāgasaññā

      “The perceptions of ugliness, death, repulsiveness of food, dissatisfaction with the whole world, impermanence, suffering in impermanence, and not-self in suffering, giving up, and fading away.”

      I guess the translation is not fully correct. Can someone give a good translation?

      https://suttacentral.net/an9.16/en/sujato

    • #17666
      y not
      Participant

      Hello Tobias !

      For one thing it is more ‘full’ but do not know how more ‘correct’than Dutiyasannasutta ( AN 7.49) where the perceptions are given as just seven – omitting the last two here. I make out that ‘giving up’ is abandoning all hope in sansara to seek Nibbana and ‘fading away’ is that very attainment of Nibbana.

      y not

    • #17677
      Lal
      Keymaster

      All these are just different ways of expressing the unfruitfulness of seeking long-term happiness in a world that is, by nature, will not be able to provide. In contrast, one will be subjected to much suffering when having that “false hope”.

      Asubha means not auspicious. People get attached to sense pleasing things with the perception of them being auspicious, i.e.,they will be good and beneficial.

      No matter how much money, fame, etc one gets in a lifetime, one will have to leave all that behind at death, AND it could come at any moment. One needs to have the “marana sanna“, in order to strive harder.

      It is not a good a good idea to have cravings for food. One needs food to sustain oneself, but beyond that it is another craving, that will lead to suffering. When one is too greedy, one cultivates “greedy sankhara” and could become eligible to become a preta (hungry ghost).

      The bottom line is that it is not a good idea to have cravings for anything in this world. Of course, one should not just abstain from things arbitrarily; that “sanna” comes via understanding, as one makes progress.

      As for, “aniccasaññā, anicce dukkhasaññā, dukkhe anattasaññā” this is discussed in the key post, “Anicca, Dukkha, Anatta – Wrong Interpretations“. See #5.

      pahānasaññā, virāgasaññā are along the same lines. Pahāna means to “get rid of based on their unfruitfulness AND danger”. Virāga is t lose rāga.

      All these saññā are inter-related. Different people may be able to cultivate different types based on their gati.

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